The Army is moving ahead with its Optionally Manned Fighting Vehicle effort after releasing a draft request for proposals Thursday, which includes plans to award two vendors prototype development contracts in 2020.

A final RFP for the program to replace its Bradleys is set to arrive in late March.

General Dynamics’ Griffin III. Photo Matthew Beinart

“The Next Generation Combat Vehicle – Optionally Manned Fight Vehicle (NGCV-OMFV) program will procure a vehicle that provides Armor Brigade Combat Teams (ABCTs) a protected, long range, cyber resilient, precision direct fire capability for early/forcible entry operations,” officials wrote in the notice. “ABCTs require this capability to be employed in austere and unpredictable locations allowing them to avoid the enemy’s strengths and rapidly transition to offensive operations and exploit the initiative.”

Officials in the notice said the program will be delivered “under a significantly reduced timeline” a key criteria for the Army’s modernization programs, of which OMFV falls under the Next-Generation Combat Vehicle line of effort.

OMFV will begin directly with contracts for Engineering and Manufacturing Development phase skipping over any multi-year technical development work.

The Army will award development contracts to two vendors in the second quarter of fiscal year 2020 to deliver 14 prototype vehicles. The contracts will also require each partner to deliver two Ballistic Hull and Turrets.

The draft RFP included capability requirements for a 50mm medium-caliber cannon and the ability to eventually integrate the Army’s Modular Active Protection System framework.

BAE Systems’ MkIV CV90. Photo: Matthew Beinart

“The NGCV-OMFV must exceed current capabilities while overmatching similar threat
class systems,” officials wrote in the draft RFP. “It must be optimized for dense urban areas while also defeating pacing threats on rural (open, semi-restricted and restricted) terrain and be characterized by the ability to spiral in advanced technologies as they mature.”

Officials have previously said they intend to start fielding OMFV by 2026, with several companies already showcasing their potential vehicle offerings at the Association of the United States Army conference this past October (Defense Daily, Oct. 2018).

BAE Systems’ CV90, General Dynamics’ [GD] Griffin II and Raytheon’s [RTN] Lynx vehicle developed in partnership with Germany’s Rheinmetall, and an SAIC [SAIC] model based off its offering for the Army’s Mobile Protected Firepower program, have all been proposed as potential options for OMFV.